The following press release came out today (27). It applies to foreign nationals arriving in the United States.
From a press release issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Bureau of Customs and Border Protection.
Beginning October 26, 2004, officers from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will begin enforcing requirements that travelers applying for admission under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) must be in possession of a machine-readable passport. Following procedures announced today, if, after October 26, 2004, a Visa Waiver Program national presents him or herself for admission to the United States without a machine-readable passport or non-immigrant visa, a CBP officer is permitted to grant a one-time exemption to admit the traveler to the United States. The traveler will be issued a letter explaining the U.S. entry requirements and his or her passport will be annotated that a one-time exemption has been granted.
“These interim procedures will allow U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers to effectively enforce the law and exercise discretion when appropriate,” said Under Secretary for Border and Transportation Security Asa Hutchinson. “These are prudent steps to ease travelers into these new documentation requirements. The United States is a welcoming nation and we do not want to turn people away because they do not possess the newly required passport or a valid non-immigrant visa.”
Thats why we have always used a passport, it is the only way to go.
And I don't want ot hear about the " it costs 85 $ and I'll only use it once or twice in 5 yrs" tough, you problay spend 85 dollars in a casino or on a nice dinner , and have nothing to show for it. Passports are the best source of id , and we all want to be safe don't we?????
This is for Foreigners Entering the United States. Not United States Citizens leaving or returning to the United States.
The Visa Waiver Program applies to countries where the citizens do not need a visa to enter the United States. These countries are:
Andorra, Austria, Australia, Belgium, Brunei, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom (for citizens with the unrestricted right of permanent abode in England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man).
People from these countries need the machine readable passport or get the exemption letter when they enter.
This does apply to US citizens: However if you are a US citizen: GET A PASSPORT.
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